Milton Erickson describes hypnosis as a valuable therapeutic tool that can be used enhance a persons self awareness and facilitate therapeutic communications with their subconscious. He used it to help clients take responsibility to heal themselves by giving them the skills they needed to do just that.
A person can enter into their own form of hypnotic trance regularly and it often happens to individuals several times a day. Have you ever been so absorbed in a piece of work that you have completely lost track of what was going on around you? Have you lost yourself in a really good book, a TV program or a film? Have you ever been daydreaming to the point where you haven't heard you name being called by a person near to you? All of these are common examples of self-induced hypnosis.
The term "trance" refers to that day-dreamy state of mind, as I described above, and it is completely natural. When a person is experiencing trance is means that their mind is in a highly absorbent state which is often experienced by people when they meditate, listen to music or undergo a hypnotic induction. The difference between these types of trance is the way the person enters into that trance. Whether elicited by a hypnotherapist or by listening to a piece of relaxing music; a trance is a trance.
People in a hypnotic trance are able to pay much closer attention to sources of information and guidance that are in their subconscious mind already. They are more able to more comfortably accept indirect, or even direct, statements from the hypnotherapist that they might otherwise reject. People can also experience imagined, future events with such clarity that they can make the changes they want to in their mind with the belief that they would be able to make these new decisions in the same situation if it happens in their everyday lives.
During a hypnotherapy session I help guide you into a peaceful trance state to help you focus your mind and I will make gentle suggestions to help you access these resources in your subconscious mind to help you conquer your issue and to heal. As an example, you may be helped to see yourself as a supportive advisor during a time when you would normally experience a phobic reaction, therefore learning to trust in yourself and give you the ability to get through the situation without feeling the same level of panic as you have done before.
To help with this I may encourage you to talk about the first time you experienced the behaviour, phobia or problem that you are trying to overcome and how you felt at that moment. This can feel a bit uncomfortable at times but it can help us to find the source of the problem and consequently find a solution.
I use a series of calming messages, such as “you are safe and secure” and “no one can harm you” during the session to reassure all my clients that during hypnosis they can face their problems without feeling worried. Nothing in hypnotherapy can be done without your control and self-permission.
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